An activist of two big traditions. Skaryna and Ukraine Scholarly research of Francysk Skaryna legacy has been initiated by J.V. Bacmejster in 1776 and V.S. Sopikow in 1813. Further research conducted in the XX century by Alexander Bilecki, Pavel Popov, Yaroslav Isayevich, U. Anichenko and contemporary studies of Halyna Kovalchuk, Alexandr Nauvov, Mariola Walczak-Mikolajczak and others demonstrate how important were Skaryna’s activities on the border of two big traditions. In this context it’s worth to focus on a topic “Skaryna and Ukraine” in all its depth: biographical, publishing, polygraphic, academic, bibliographical. Ukrainian episode in Skaryna’s life and his birth town of Polotsk is related to the cult of Saint Euphrosyne of Polotsk who established the fi rst female monastery and is considered a patron of female monasticism of Rus. Polygraphic context of Skaryna’s activities is tied to Western Europe. Upon the receipt of a doctorate in medicine at the University of Padua he visited Venice – one of the most prominent centers of printing and publishing including Slavic, Greek and Hebrew texts where he also mastered modern printing techniques. In Prague Skaryna used two color printing technique to publish The Song of Songs and print the title page of Biblia Ruska. In Vilnius two color printing technique has been applied to print fi ve chapters of the Bible and just one title page of Psalter.
The purpose of this paper is an attempt to reflect on the beginnings of Ukrainian modernism. The article is an analysis of the “Open letter to Ukrainian writers” by Mykola Voronyi and his polemics with a well-known Ukrainian writer, Ivan Franko. This letter, which was published in the journal “Literaturno-Naukowy Wisnyk” in 1901, is a very important document of the epoch, bearing the mark of a literary manifesto. This little note made the Ukrainian intelligentsia aware of the crisis of so-called narodnytstvo poetics and the need for far-reaching modernization of Ukrainian literature. The writer postulated the rejection of adopted schemes in favour of the latest European trends in literature. The attempt to implement the program demands was an edition of Mykola Voronyi’s literary collection, “From the Valleys and Above the Clouds”, which has also been analyzed and discussed in this paper. The author concludes that the “Open letter to Ukrainian writers” can be considered one of the first manifestations of Ukrainian modernism
The 2014/2015 revolution at the Kiev Maidan (and elsewhere in Ukraine) made a wide-ranging impact on the literature. In this paper I analyse diaries devoted to the events of the dignity revolution. I have selected three texts written in three different languages: “ Приватний щоденник ” by Marija Matios (in Ukrainian). “ Дневник Майдана ” by Adrjej Kurkov (in Russian) and “Ogień Majdanu. Dziennik rewolucji 22.11.2013– 22.02.2014” (in Polish). These texts are highly interesting mostly because they allow looking at the Maidan through the eyes of witnesses. Because of that we do not receive mere facts, but a testimony which tells us most about the people involved, represented by the specific author reporting their experiences, impressions, emotions, and thoughts. It is characteristic for the personal document literature that it is positioned somewhere between the events being described and the internal experiences, judgements and preferences of the author. It is shaped by their knowledge, experience, and moral code. These texts often con- centrate on the fates of specific individuals, their behaviours, the reasons and consequences thereof. They differ both in terms of the form and the motivations of the authors. They are all, however, rather unique, because they speak of the events of most recent history which so violently cut through the daily lives of Ukrainian citizens.
The work is devoted to the analysis of quite rare kind of wedding speeches occurring in a ceremony of the part of Vologda province in the end 19th – early 20th century. The author considers features of functioning of the text in a wedding ceremony, national terminology, the territory of distribution, poetic features, a ratio of all-Russian and regional components in the texts. It is shown that by means of these texts the party of the bride implicitly declared about her physical and emotional preparedness for marriage because the themes of female physical beauty, health, portliness, youth, fertility, complaisance, etc. are emphasized in these texts.
The article deals with the adaptation of Belorussian and Russian affixes in Polish dialects of Braslaw region. The author singles out certain models of af fixal adaptation on the basis of phonetic, morphological and semantic or phonomorphological equivalence. Collected vocabulary provides many examples where we can observe the assimilation of foreign elements into the native system of the multilingual population. Modifications of borrowings in this way indicate the vitality of the systemic word-formative rules of the Polish language in the speakers’ consciousness.
In this paper I respond to Elżbieta Mikiciuk’s polemic with my article: The Brothers Karamazov: Dostoevsky’s Tainted Hosanna (“Slavia Orientalis” 2017, nr 1; the polemic was published in “Slavia Orientalis” 2017, nr 2). I use this opportunity to look at my article anew and restate my interpretative approach to Dostoevsky’s last novel as well as the line of argumentation I had decided to adopt. The substance of my response relies heavily on the point evoked several times by E. Mikiciuk, concerning my “biased” selection of citations from the novel which generates a “one-dimensional”, “manipulated”, and “false” image of Christianity as a religion that approves of an “economic” idea of God, a God from whom one has to “buy” a right to salvation. Recalling narrations of starets Zosima on the problem of involuntary suffering and death, and meditating on an indefi nite, unpredictable or highly ambiguous nature of such characters as Dymitr and Alyosha Karamazov or Smerdyakov, I emphasize the radical openness and polyphonic nature of Dostoevsky's text which allows for manifold, even contradictory readings and understandings of the same fragments of his complex works. Further, I develop a key thesis that both theological/religious interpretations of Dostoevsky’s oeuvre, as supported by Elżbieta Mikiciuk, and philosophical/ existential ones, as advanced by me, are feasible and valuable as long as they remain anchored in a close reading and do not lay claims to representing the one and only valid approach to his literary universe. The paper ends with a conclusion in which I encourage a mutually inspirational dialogue (the agon, if you will) between these two exegetic strategies. Such a dialogue seems essential for a reinvigoration of Dostoevsky’s literary work, against which one should continuously measure himself in a constant, even painful at times, sense of insuffi ciency of his/her interpretative insight facing a paradoxical, axiologically ambivalent, and strictly polyphonic oeuvre.